King Cove Tribal Leaders Condemn Interior Secretary’s Callous Dismissal of Trust Responsibility to Native People
King Cove, AK – July 25, 2014 – King Cove tribal and community leaders denounced the U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s callous dismissal of her department’s trust responsibility to the Native people of America. Today, Alaska House Majority Leader Lance Pruitt announced in a press release that he’s “shocked and taken aback at Secretary Sally Jewell’s quick and callous comment indicating that there were bigger issues and that Alaskans need to just get over this.” This morning during a meeting with state legislators at the White House, Pruitt asked Secretary Jewell when she would respond to several requests from local residents, the state legislature and Alaska’s congressional members to reconsider her decision to block the proposed land trade between the state and federal governments.
“It’s simply unbelievable that the Secretary would treat an Alaska legislator with such disregard over a matter that is so close to our hearts,” said Della Trumble, spokeswoman for the Agdaagux Tribe and the King Cove (Native) Corporation. “Her disrespect toward Native People and our entire state is absolutely shocking and very disappointing. We simply want to have a road connecting our remote community to the all-weather Cold Bay Airport. Don’t we all want to make sure our loved ones can make it safely to medical care when the weather is too dangerous for travel by plane or boat? A small gravel road is such a simple, common-sense solution. We’re just asking for some consideration and compassion.”
Wednesday marked the seven-month anniversary of Jewell’s rejection of the road and land exchange. Earlier this week, Senator Lisa Murkowski sent Jewell a letter asking her to respond to numerous requests from King Cove. To this day, Jewell has not responded to the people of King Cove.
For more information, visit http://www.aleutianseast.org/ .